We’ve all thought about it once or twice …
The top 5 reasons parents hire household help
- The parent has lost their spouse or is divorced
- The child needs extra help with school or is developmentally behind
- The parents need an extra set of hands because of their demanding careers
- The baby requires a sleep specialist to aid in sleep
- The parents have very intense schedules and cannot meet every time commitment alone
If I only had someone to pick up the kids or clean the house or run the errands or stay home to let the cable guy in or any of the other thousand things I have to do today, then life would be so much easier.
Adult life is hard. Parent life is harder. And sometimes, you just need a little help.
But once you make that decision to hire a helping hand, there’s an inevitable avalanche of questions, such as how to find someone you can trust, how much you should be paying by the hour, what all can you ask of your nanny, and on and on.
Tiffanie Kinder, founder of Nanny Connections, says you have to trust your intuition because you know what’s right for your family. But still, she says there are a few things you should keep in mind when hiring help:
What type of household help should I hire?
Nannies are hired to help with the kids, and night nurses can help you catch some sleep, as well as helping your baby develop healthy sleeping habits. You can also decide between a live-in nanny or one who just visits during the day. But the real trend, according to Kinder, is families hiring household managers who can help with morning and afternoon routines, kids’ activities, groceries, errands and more. She says this trend might have something to do an incline in the stay-at-home dad/working mom dynamic.
How much experience do I want to pay for?
Like anything else in life, you get what you pay for. So, if you’re looking for someone to help but can’t pay a ton, Kinder says the typical younger nanny will cost you about $14-16 an hour in Chicagoland. If you’re looking for a more experienced “career” nanny, that will run you about $16-25 per hour. And if you are looking to hire a household manager in Chicagoland, you can expect to pay about $18-25 an hour.
What type of influence will this person have in my family’s life?
Kinder says beyond the logistics of hiring a person to help out, it’s even more significant to remember that this person will leave a lasting impact on your family, so it’s important to make sure they will have a positive influence.
Do our needs and wants align?
Being very honest and clear about expectations and time commitments is huge, Kinder says, so you end up with the best fit for your family. A smart way to go is to set up some kind of work agreement in writing that outlines the responsibilities and expectations of your nanny or manager.
Is this the right person for my child’s developmental level?
When interviewing nannies, consider asking questions catered to your child’s developmental level, so that you know that the potential nanny understands how to most effectively care for your child’s age group.
Will I use a service to find a nanny or find someone on my own?
You might have a particular nanny in mind, but if you don’t, using a nanny service like Nanny Connections can ensure a little more security in your search. “We act as sort of a gatekeeper to families so they don’t have to waste their time finding qualified, credible help,” Kinder says. Depending on the service you use, potential nannies will have complete background checks and be pre-approved by the service. A nanny service can also help you find the person who best fits your family by knowing both you and the nanny’s separate interests and needs.